Reverend Derek Crabtree

Reverend Derek Crabtree started his career as an Assistant Lecturer in Government Exeter University in 1955; by 1960 he was seconded as Acting Head in the Department of Public Administration, Nigerian College, Ibadan. He worked in various colleges over the next 30 years, and then in 1967 became Senior Lecture in Politics at the University of Kent.  In 1973 Derek became Master of Keynes College in the University, and then in 1995 became an ordained priest in Church of England, serving in the University Chaplaincy and the local parish church.

Derek wished to read History, but felt he lacked the adequate Latin qualification; the London course which Leicester offered had a large element of History. He was offered the choice of a History scholarship, considerately, by the College, but could not countenance the additional, unfunded, year of Latin. There was the additional factor in the then small size of the College. (In 1953 Principal Charles Wilson told him he thought 1,000 students the ideal size!)

Reverend Derek Crabtree advises graduates looking to go into a similar profession to him, ''Be absolutely committed to your chosen discipline, with a profound desire to communicate it to others. Be prepared to face infinitely more challenges to entry into an academic career than were ever faced by me and my contemporaries.''

Derek believes his training in Political by John Rees - who he believes had the sharpest intellect he ever encountered - was the foundation of his subsequent career. It felt it showed him the ideal of university teaching - not least in the objective presentation of material.

Back to top